Sometimes our justice system makes us so proud to be Americans, while other times, it makes us Face-Palm and SMH. While we’re on the clock at Montagna Law, we strive for the former – let justice be served! But when we’re honest with ourselves, we all just enjoy a good laugh. Here we’ve compiled another list of absurd legal cases for your entertainment. Enjoy!
1991: Richard Overton vs. Anheuser-Busch
Michigan man Richard Overton sued the popular brew-makers for false advertising, stating that the television commercials featured beautiful women in tropical settings, which apparently did not match his experience with the beverage.
After Overton brought his case for emotional distress, mental injury and financial loss, the case was dismissed.
1995: Robert Lee Brock vs Robert Lee Brock
No, it’s not a typo and yes, you read it right. Brock was in jail in Chesapeake, VA for breaking & entering as well as grand larceny. He sued himself for violating his own civil rights: “I partook of alcoholic beverages…as a result I caused myself to violate my own religious beliefs. This was done by my going out and getting arrested.”
The claim was dismissed but Brock’s creative approach to civil litigation was applauded.
2000: Cleanthi Peters vs Universal Studios
Scaredy-cats, beware! Cleanthi Peters spent a chilling night visiting Universal Studios’ Halloween Horror Nights Haunted House in Orlando, FL. Instead of laughing off the experience afterwards, however, Peters decided to sue the haunted house for being “too scary.”
Claiming extreme fear, mental anguish and emotional distress, Peters was eventually granted $15,000 for her trouble.
2005: Anna Ayala vs Wendy’s Franchise Owner
Ayala sued her local Wendy’s restaurant after allegedly finding a human finger in her chili. Authorities were called in, investigations conducted, but no stumps were uncovered that matched the finger. Naturally, investigators looked to Ayala. It was eventually uncovered that the finger belonged to a family friend, who had lost it in a workplace accident, and given it to her as a method of settling a bet (yuck). Ayala was found guilty of attempting to extort everyone’s favorite redhead fast food chain, and served four of a nine year sentence.
Plus she was banned from Wendy’s, and that’s the real punishment.
2009: Trina Thompson vs Monroe College
We all know the job market has been better, but this one is ridiculous. A Monroe College graduate, Thompson became frustrated three months after walking across that stage, because she still wasn’t employed. In a fit of unemployable rage, she decided to sue the institution that educated her, for $70,000. Specifically blaming the Office of Career Advancement for giving priority to students with high grade point averages (Thompson graduated with a 2.7), her complaint requested an additional $2,000 to make up for the stress of a three-month job hunt.
Needless to say, her case was dismissed.
Jon Montagna received a Bachelor of Arts in Literature from American University in Washington D.C. and graduated Cum Laude from the University of Miami School of Law in 1999. Jon practices law in the Hampton Roads Virginia area.